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Sweet Lake Land & Oil Co. v. Exxon Mobil Corp.

ELR Citation: 41 ELR 20351
Nos. 2:09 CV 1100, (W.D. La., 11/16/2011) (Minaldi, J.)

A district court held that an oil company is liable for property damages caused by its predecessor-in-interest who conducted oil and gas exploration and production activities on the site under three subleases. Article 128 of the Louisiana Mineral Code provides that a sublessee acquires the rights and powers of the lessee and becomes directly responsible to the original lessor for performance of the lessee's obligations to the extent of the interest acquired. Accordingly, the company must restore the property to the conditions that existed at the time the lease was granted. And even though one of the subleases was issued before Article 128 was enacted, Article 128 applies retroactively.